A-10 – While some see Virginia Commonwealth recreating their magical run from a couple of years, most basketball bettors are not seeing it that way at all. This A-10 title tilt opened at a Pick and moved swiftly to -2.5 by those betting college basketball. Why the Billikens are such a popular choice is they do not beat themselves and have seldom fallen prey to committing turnovers in bunches, a VCU specialty. St. Louis runs an efficient half court offense, which can slow down the Rams. VCU’s orchestrated chaos has to turn the ball over for easy buckets and if they start raining 3’s, they are nearly impossible to defeat. What team grabs the tempo is the outright winner.
ACC – Let’s be truthful, after North Carolina lost by 26 at Miami on Feb. 9, nobody would have possibly thought the Tar Heels would have a rematch with the Hurricanes in the conference championship. Yet here they are, thanks to Roy Williams guidance and having them play at a pace which works for this club, which is slower than the coach prefers, but more suitable to the talent on hand. After being shakier than the Broncos front office with Elvis Dumervil, Miami was clutch against B.C. in their ACC opener and played like the Hurricanes for most of the conference campaign against N.C. State yesterday. The Canes are a three-point choice and how much freedom Share Larkin has will be the deciding factor.
SEC – You have to hand it to the Ole Miss players and coaches, they understand their team is not in this position if the SEC’s leading scorer Marshall Henderson is not on their club. Henderson is a goof; nevertheless, he works hard, makes shots and has evolved into more of team player who maddens the opposition with his antics. Florida has to contain Henderson as best they can and frustrate him to take the junior guard out of game and make him think about non-basketball stuff. The Rebels are 11-point underdogs and they absolutely cannot let the Gators put together a 10 or 12-point run, which they seem to do in every victory. Florida’s experience in this setting should make the difference.
Big Ten – Without fail, Bo Ryan’s Badgers always find a way, in spite of having players who do not look like they could play on good AAU team from Wisconsin, let alone play for a Big Ten championship. Yet every year, the Badgers get more done with less by following the Ryan’s teachings. At this moment, Indiana might have more talent, but nobody is playing better in America’s best conference than Ohio State. With Aaron Craft a scoring threat by driving and nailing short jumpers, the Buckeyes have a much needed extra scoring threat, to go along with superior defense. Ohio State is favored by two points and should cut down the nets in Chi-Town.